Ambassadors for Civic Engagement (ACE) Fellowship 2022-23

Unique opportunity to work on issues related to homelessness in Southwestern PA

The Ambassadors for Civic Engagement (ACE) Fellowship provides an opportunity for graduate students to apply their education and skills to contribute to and improve the quality of life of people living in the Pittsburgh region through a long-term experiential fellowship with a community partner that works in public policy, governance, community organizing and activism, or philanthropy. 

Multiple diverse and highly competitive graduate-level ACE Fellows from a wide-range of backgrounds will work as a team with a community partner to address a specific organizational, policy, or community issue while increasing their social responsibility, heightening their understanding of human diversity, and learning from their peers.

2022-2023 Community Partner

The Institute of Politics, Elsie Hillman Civic Forum has partnered with the Homeless Children’s Education Fund (HCEF) this year.

Project Mentor

Brian KnightBrian Knight
Manager of Community Engagement
Homeless Children's Education Fund

Project Deliverables 

  1. Investigate a critical issue affecting students experiencing homelessness in Southwestern PA
  2. Identify a potential policy solution around which to convene public officials
  3. Design and convene a legislative luncheon for key public officials who could play a role in enacting policy solutions

When was this fellowship offered?

It's offered every academic year, and in 2022-23, the fellowship runs from late 2022 through June 30, 2023.

Meet the 2022-2023 ACE Fellows

Madison BrediceMadison Bredice is a first year graduate student at the University of Pittsburgh studying Public and International Affairs, focusing on Human Security. Madison grew up in Delmont, PA and has lived in Western Pennsylvania for the majority of her life. 

She attended the University of the Pittsburgh for her undergraduate degree where she studied Spanish, Latin American Studies, Sociology and Criminal Justice. During her undergraduate degree, Madison studied abroad in Havana, Cuba for six weeks where her sense of advocacy grew immensely. This led her to pursue her master’s degree so she can help and advocate for people on a larger scale. 

After Madison obtained her bachelor’s degree, she then moved to Columbus, OH where she worked for a healthcare navigation company. Here she homed in on her advocacy skills within the realm of our complicated healthcare system. While she enjoyed her work in this line of business, Madison wanted to make a more direct impact to people. She is excited with the opportunity to work with the Homeless Children’s Education Fund and to give back to a community near and dear to her heart.


Arvin SequeiraMy name is Arvin Sequeira, and I am currently a second year student pharmacist at the University of Pittsburgh, School of Pharmacy. Pharmacists are one of the most accessible healthcare professionals in medicine and they can really see aspects of people in the communities that they belong to. In being so accessible, we can see various facets of the social determinants of health in play and how they can affect an individual’s wellbeing. 

By learning about these determinants and seeing them in practice, I have really been drawn to the idea of working with communities to tackle factors outside of healthcare that affect them. In my work through various organizations such as the English Language Institute, Reimagine Reentry, and my work with Community Human Services, I have grappled with those questions of how to better serve our under-resourced populations. Helping the wider Pittsburgh region understand those pressing issues is a way to help get our elected officials to conduct work to better those concerns. 

I hope to continue this work well into my career and I am excited to work with the Elsie Hillman Civic Forum as well as the Homeless Children’s Education Fund to look closely at those questions and find better ways to address their solutions.  

Past ACE Placements